November Health Ministers’ Meeting and Newborn Bloodspot Screening


On 10 November 2023, Health Ministers from all Australian governments met to discuss a range of important issues for Australia’s healthcare system. The purpose of these Health Ministers’ Meetings is to provide leadership and facilitate joint decision making on health issues of national importance.

As the national peak body for Australians living with a rare disease, Rare Voices Australia (RVA) welcomes the post-meeting Communique regarding several issues relevant to Australians living with a rare disease, including newborn bloodspot screening (NBS). Regarding the expansion of the NBS Program, the Communique reads:

“Ministers agreed on the Newborn Bloodspot Screening decision-making pathways and priority actions. Ministers agreed to consider adding more conditions to the screening program, and that States and Territories will work with the Commonwealth to ensure the program is sustainable.”

RVA is encouraged by the heightened awareness of the profile and importance of NBS and the ongoing commitments made between the Commonwealth, states and territories. Read the Communique in full on the Department of Health and Aged Care’s website.